Last Saturday I went to my first weaving class. There were four of us, so it was a nice cozy class, with ages ranging from 13 to retired.
Since I'd already muddled through my first and second weaving projects the first few things she'd taught us, I'd already figured out. But I did learn a few useful things - how to do a weaver's knot, how to wind the yarn onto the shuttle to get the maximum amount of yarn with the minimal amount of bulk, how to direct warp onto the loop by tying the yarn directly onto the apron rods, and what the correct tension should be.
Now, the tension - that's one of those things I never would have figured out just by reading books and watching you-tube videos. After I'd tightened up my loom, the instructor came by and gave it another couple of turns. I was really shocked at how tight it was supposed to be!
She also showed us a different technique for how the weft yarn should lay between the warps before beating. The video's I'd seen showed a 30 degree angle, but she had us do a semi-circle. Both methods essentially just make sure you have enough extra weft yarn to go over and under each warp yarn without having to stretch. Hmm... hard to describe... but you can kinda see it in this picture.
I also learned that when I'm not weaving, or when I'm transporting my loom, I should stick the shuttle between the yarns, and set the reed in the neutral position. Seems pretty basic, but it wasn't something I'd thought of.
Overall it was a good class. No mind-blowing discoveries, but several little tips and tricks I'm not sure I would have picked up on my own. It was nice to have someone there double checking what I was doing and letting me know I was on the right track. Now I need to finish the weaving part and bring it back in two weeks for the second part of the class - how to finish the project & remove it from the loom.